Satellite observations of reconnection between emerging and pre-existing small-scale magnetic fields
We report multi-wavelength ultraviolet observations taken with the IRIS satellite, concerning the emergence phase in the upper chromosphere and transition region of an emerging flux region (EFR) embedded in the unipolar plage of active region NOAA 12529. The photospheric configuration of the EFR is analyzed in detail benefitting from measurements taken with the spectropolarimeter aboard the Hinode satellite, when the EFR was fully developed. In addition, these data are complemented by full-disk, simultaneous observations of the SDO satellite, relevant to the photosphere and the corona. In the photosphere, magnetic flux emergence signatures are recognized in the fuzzy granulation, with dark alignments between the emerging polarities, cospatial with highly inclined fields. In the upper atmospheric layers, we identify recurrent brightenings that resemble UV bursts, with counterparts in all coronal passbands. These occur at the edges of the EFR and in the region of the arch filament system (AFS) cospatial to the EFR. Jet activity is also found at chromospheric and coronal levels, near the AFS and the observed brightness enhancement sites. The analysis of the IRIS line profiles reveals the heating of dense plasma in the low solar atmosphere and the driving of bi-directional high-velocity flows with speeds up to 100 km/s at the same locations. Furthermore, we detect a correlation between the Doppler velocity and line width of the Si IV 1394 and 1402 Å line profiles in the UV burst pixels and their skewness. Comparing these findings with previous observations and numerical models, we suggest evidence of several long-lasting, small-scale magnetic reconnection episodes between the emerging bipole and the ambient field. This process leads to the cancellation of a pre-existing photospheric flux concentration of the plage with the opposite polarity flux patch of the EFR. The reconnection appears to occur higher in the atmosphere than usually observed.
Nuovo Cimento C Geophysics Space Physics C
- Pub Date:
- January 2019
- Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics
- 4 pages, 2 figures, to be published in "Nuovo Cimento C" as proceeding of the Third Meeting of the Italian Solar and Heliospheric Community